The Next High-Tech Leap for Human Resources

Posted by Zach Harned on Aug 17, 2017 11:31:00 AM


Human Resources (HR) teams are always looking for ways to creatively optimize in order to better serve the employees and add value to the company as a whole. One of the most recent innovations for HR has emerged out of the tech sector, namely, the integration and utilization of artificial intelligence (AI).

What do HR and the Orchestra have in Common?

A major task for any HR division is handling recruitment, but with this task comes the ever present threat of bias. This is a problem that afflicts a great number of businesses and industries, but a particularly informative example comes from the orchestra. As it became clear that orchestra’s were disproportionately hiring male performers, they decided to institute a new recruiting procedure: the blind tryout. When the performers came on stage to audition, they now played behind a curtain. At first the curtain didn’t extend all the way down to the floor, so discriminations could still be made on the basis of footwear. After extending the curtain, they realized that they could still hear what kind of shoes the applicant was wearing as he or she walked out onto the stage, so they put down carpeting to hide the sound as well. This innovation became standard procedure, and resulted in an unbiased recruitment procedure that has been remarkably effective in increasing gender diversity amongst orchestras.

What Tech is HR Using Now?

But orchestras are not the only groups that exhibit bias in their recruitment. Numerous businesses in various industries suffer from this problem as well, and given the complex hiring procedures of most companies, there doesn’t appear to be solution as elegant and simple as the orchestra’s curtain. Instead HR teams have started looking to AI to help deal with the problem of bias in hiring. Businesses are using AI and machine learning algorithms to more intelligently comb through resumes, and even assist with interviews. Companies like GapJumpers are finding ways to utilize AI to host “blind auditions,” similar to the orchestra’s solution, in order to overcome the gender gap in the tech sector.

What’s the Next Big Thing for HR?

Human resources departments are starting to dip their toe into the AI waters, and they are reaping impressive benefits from this. AI’s success in assisting HR with the issue of bias in recruiting has caused many companies to start looking for other ways that AI can improve and streamline the myriad tasks faced by HR departments. One of the most promising new ways for AI to assist HR stems from the advent of chat in the workplace. Companies are embracing chat platforms like Slack and Microsoft Teams as effective and efficient means of communication amongst employees. But with this adoption has come numerous opportunities and difficulties for HR departments.

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For example, chat now allows employees to quickly ask the HR team simple questions like, “What’s the difference between a PPO and an HMO?” or “What is our sick leave policy?” Unfortunately this can lead to the HR team being overwhelmed by this flood employee queries. Wouldn’t it be great if HR had an assistant designed to answer all of these easy and repetitive questions, freeing them up to focus on the more interesting and proactive parts of the job? It’s for that reason that we developed Talla, an intelligent chatbot that sits right in your chat platform. Talla learns the answers to these questions and takes care of the monotony of answering them for you. And if Talla doesn’t know the answer, it reports to the right person in HR, who then teaches Talla the answer for the next time the question comes up. Talla’s advanced natural language processing abilities even allow it to detect when the same answer can be provided for questions worded differently. For instance, two employees might ask, “Do I have to come into work on Monday?” and “Is the office closed for Labor Day?” and Talla is smart enough to know that both questions can receive the same answer. This means you don’t have to teach Talla the answer to every conceivable variation of every question, an impossible task! Instead you progressively and easily build up Talla’s knowledge base, meaning that the more people use Talla, the smarter it gets.

But this isn’t the only way that Talla can help your HR team. Talla’s broadcast feature enables you to easily disseminate information to specific employee groups, facilitating the rollout of trainings or onboarding new employees. Not only does this save time and energy on behalf of the HR team, but it also provides standardization of training, enhancing both efficacy and accountability. And Talla is a great way not only for HR to talk to employees, but also to listen to them. Talla’s ability to distribute questions and polls with instantaneous responses provides a speedy means of information gathering, whether it is inquiring about launching a new business initiative, or deciding where to eat lunch.

In short, artificially intelligent chatbots are the next big leap forward to supercharge your HR team. Don’t get left behind, start your free trial with Talla today to get a taste of the future of HR.

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Topics: Artificial Intelligence, Future of Work, Human Resources